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kosovohp
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Join date : 2010-09-28

PostSubject: In English   Fri Dec 10, 2010 10:21 pm

In English, and generally outside Ethiopia, the country was also once historically known as Abyssinia, derived from Habesh, an early Arabic form of the Ethiosemitic name "Ḥabaśāt" (unvocalized "ḤBŚT"). The modern form Habesha is the native name for the country's inhabitants (while the country has been called "Ityopp'ya"). In a few languages, Ethiopia is still referred to by names cognate with "Abyssinia," e.g., modern Arabic Al-Ḥabashah, meaning land of the Habasha people.[citation needed]

The term Habesha, strictly speaking, refers only to the Semitic-speaking groups, particularly the Amhara and Tigray-Tigrinya people who have historically dominated the country politically, as well as the Gurage and other smaller communities like the Harari of eastern Ethiopia. However, in contemporary Ethiopia, the word Habesha is sometimes used to describe all Ethiopians and Eritreans.[citation needed] Abyssinia can strictly refer to just the northwestern Ethiopian provinces of Amhara and Tigray, as well as central Eritrea, while it was historically used as another name for Ethiopia.[29]

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